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Cornish secondary school students have an out-of-this-world opportunity to immerse themselves in the space sector at new Space Camp for Cornwall.
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Created and funded by Truro and Penwith College’s Cornwall Space and Aerospace Technology Training project (CSATT), Space Camp Cornwall will be free to year 9 and 10 students this summer.
The week-long, non-residential camp will fully immerse students in the space sector, allowing them to take part in a unique rocket building challenge, spend a day at Spaceport Cornwall, where the UK’s first rocket will be launched into space in 2022, and tour Goonhilly Earth Station’s famous satellite dishes that were recently used to communicate with the European Space Agency’s Mars Express spacecraft.
Space Camp cadets will also attend talks from world-leading space experts with topics including: The UK’s First Astronaut Training Centre, Removing Space Junk from Orbit, Safety of UK Rocket Launches and Using Satellite Data to Protect the Environment.
The week will culminate in a graduation ceremony for family and friends to celebrate the cadet’s achievements and to find out more about career opportunities in the space sector in Cornwall.
Students who are interested in joining Space Camp Cornwall are invited to apply for a place at spacecampcornwall.eventbrite.co.uk. Applicants will be notified of their places at the start of April.
The launch comes just weeks after Truro and Penwith College launched the South West’s first Space Engineering Technician Apprenticeship, with further programmes in development, to support careers in the sector that experts believe will be worth £1 billion to the Cornish economy and create hundreds of jobs.
Heidi Thiemann, Space Project Manager at CSATT, said: “We’re over the moon to be able to offer this exciting new summer camp for pupils in Cornwall. Getting hands-on with the space sector is the best way to find out about the amazing range of opportunities that it can offer young people and we want to give them the best chance of working in a career that they love.”
The funding from the College’s CSATT project has been enhanced by its ESF Access and Participation project and national construction company Wilmott Dixon, who built Spaceport Cornwall’s Centre for Space Technologies, and has generously donated £2,500 towards making the Camp accessible to all students regardless of their background.
Danielle Haskings, Senior Social Value Manager, at Wilmott Dixon said: “Space Camp Cornwall was the natural recipient of our legacy project this year. As a business we ensure community is at the heart of our delivery and we’re passionate about supporting the careers of young people. Whether it be construction or space, we know how much of a difference it can make to be immersed in a sector.”
Many more local and national organisations with interests in the sector and an appreciation of its importance to the future Cornish and UK economies have come forward to sponsor the Camp with Spaceport Cornwall, Goonhilly Earth Station, Aerospace Cornwall, Blue Abyss, Stephen Scown, and the Department of International Trade all supporting.
Truro and Penwith College is a partner of Next Steps South West (NSSW) which is also supporting Space Camp Cornwall as part of its collaboration with 14 partner universities and Colleges to run initiatives that inspire young people about options to study at University level.
Alice Selwood, Outreach Officer at Next Steps South West, said: “Space Camp Cornwall is an exciting opportunity for students to be able to see all the amazing things happening in Cornwall. From building rockets to showing a career in space is not out of their reach, but on their doorstep. Most importantly it will help them realise their potential and the impact higher-level education can have on their own home county”.
Space Camp Cornwall is yet another landmark moment for Cornwall’s space sector in 2022 with Virgin Orbit’s first launch from Spaceport Cornwall, the deployment of Kernow Sat 1, the 60th anniversary of the building of Goonhilly Earth Station and the College’s launch of its first space Apprenticeship programme all taking place this year.
Dave Pollard, Education and Outreach Manager at Spaceport Cornwall, commented: “This will be a fantastic opportunity for students across Cornwall to learn more about the historic first launch of satellites from UK soil and we look forward to working with the Space Camp Cornwall students at Spaceport Cornwall. We want to share our excitement with the next generation and inspire them to work in the space sector in Cornwall.”